What Do Mosquito Bites Look Like
Almost instantly after a mosquito bite you, you'll notice red and itchy bumps with a small dot at the centre. It's very common for mosquitoes to leave multiple bites in the same area. In some cases, these red mosquito bites can turn dark and look more like bruises. Besides the people with immune system disorders, mosquito bites can do no harm to adults, since they have been bitten a lot by mosquitos throughout their lives, which makes them less sensitive.
Children are more susceptible to a more severe reaction and even one mosquito bite can lead to low-grade fever, hives and swollen lymph nodes, as well.
Mosquito diseases are not common in our latitudes, since they're inherent to tropical climates, but still, some tourists that travelled to Africa or Asia can return with one. Mosquitoes are on the list of most dangerous animals on the planet. To prevent such a case, all travellers should consult with their health care provider and use mosquito repellents when travelling to affected areas. Not everyone bitten by a mosquito becomes sick, often the illness is mild and rarely severe. However, we should not belittle the fact that severe cases of mosquito diseases can end up with death. The most common diseases, transmitted by mosquitoes are:
- Yellow Fever
- Zika Virus
Why Do Mosquito Bites Itch
When a mosquito bites, it injects saliva in our body, while drawing out blood. Since their saliva contains a mixture of different proteins, many people turn out to be somewhat allergic to it. These proteins trigger our body's immune system, which in our defence releases the compound called histamine. It increases the number of white blood cells around the affected area. Histamine is the main reason why a mosquito’s bite itches, swells and so on.
In some cases, when a person is bitten for the first time, the body doesn't react at all. That is because their body doesn't know what really is happening and hasn't formed a response to the intruder. Once the body learns to recognise the foreign substance, it will react when exposed to it again.
How Long Do Mosquito Bites Last
How long a mosquito bite lasts will depend a lot on your tolerance to it. At best, it can last no more than three days, since in some cases, it can last for about three weeks. As it gets better, you'll notice that the itchiness fades. The swelling will also go down, as well as the urge to scratch the area.
How to Avoid Mosquito Bites
We all know that with the summer heat, mosquitoes’ activity is at its peak. That's why it is good to know the best practices to prevent the unpleasant and itchy mosquito bites.
- Beware of any standing water near your property - mosquitoes adore dead-water, so if you have an old flower pot or a bird bed in your garden, better get rid of them. However, if you still want a pond or some kind of water feature in your garden, bet on mosquito-eating fish and keep the water moving.
- Invest in repellents - DEET, PMD and picaridin-containing repellents are the most effective. Make sure to apply them on your feet, legs and ankles - the most preferred spots by mosquitos. Just avoid spraying your eyes and mouth.
- Opt for bright-coloured clothes - Dark colours, such as black and deep blue, attract these insects. Also, to prevent mosquito bites, you can use pesticide created especially for clothing and shoes. When outside, make sure to wear long sleeves and socks.
- Plant mosquito repelling plants - Some plants like Pereira are known for their ability to repel mosquitos. Other natural repellents are lavender, lemongrass, marigolds and basil. Note that these plants will not prevent mosquito bites, but will decrease the insect's population around your place.
How to Prevent Mosquito Bites While Sleeping
We all know that feeling, waking up, again and again, irritated by a sudden mosquito bite. There are some proven tips and tricks that will prevent mosquito bites while you're sleeping.
- Avoid high-intensity light bulbs - preferably, sleep in dimmed light, since it will attract fewer mosquitos.
- Invest in a mosquito net - There are many different mosquito nests, but the most effective are those treated with insecticide.
- Buy mosquito repellent lotion - Apply a good amount of mosquito repellent lotion all over your body. They're highly effective and will protect you all night.
- Let the breeze in - By breeze, we mean to run a fan. Mosquitos are not that good at flying, so a strong airflow will repel them from reaching you. Also, the fan will make it hard for mosquitoes to find you. Since they locate their target through scent, the fan next to your bed will make that harder for them.
- Take a bath before sleeping - As we’ve said above, mosquitoes find their victims through the scent, and this scent can be that of sweat. That's why, you better rinse off the sweat, and you instantly will become less attractive to mosquitoes.
Tiger Mosquito Bites
Tiger mosquitoes, like all other species, are attracted to standing water and ponds. Tiger mosquito bites can be very painful and in some cases, can lead to a serious infection.
Since these species have distinctive markings, they're easy to identify, and if you spot one, then there is some breeding ground nearby. Tiger mosquitoes don't fly far away from their breeding ground, so make sure to get rid of any flower pots, trash cans, tires and so on that have standing water inside them.
Bed Bug Bites vs Mosquito Bites
At first look, mosquito and bed bug bites can seem similar, but there are differences, in terms of the bite location and their pattern.
Mosquito bites are often located on exposed skin areas like arms, hands and legs. It's hard for mosquitoes to bite through the clothing, which is something inherent to bed bugs.
You may have one or multiple mosquito bites, and in the second case, they'll be scattered and not in line. Mosquito bites are somewhat painful and very irritating, unlike the bed bug ones.
Bed bug bites
In some cases, symptoms are invisible, but most of the time, you can see reddish itchy bumps that eventually can lead to a burning feeling, which gets worse in the morning. Bedbug bites also appear on the body parts that are exposed and in contact with the bed. Your arms, face and neck are the most favoured spots by bed bugs. Note, as well, that they can bite through your clothing. The main difference between mosquito and bed bug bites is that the latter appear in a straight line.
- Besides the people with immune system disorders, mosquito bites can do no harm to adults, unless the insect carries a dangerous disease.
- Not everyone bitten by a mosquito becomes sick, often the reaction is mild and rarely severe.
- Histamine is the main reason why mosquito bites itch and swell.
- Tiger mosquito bites can be very painful and in some cases, can lead to serious infection.